Random News

Helicopter Tours in Sabah

Sabah Helicopter Tours

Helicopter tours in Sabah are available from some travel companies in Kota Kinabalu city for those who want to see a more unique side of Sabah from the air.

On one of my working trips to Sabah, we rented a helicopter to fly the team over various popular tourist locations here and we used the helicopter services of Sabah Air who is based around Terminal 2 or KKIA 2.

The aerial tour is available to the public and if you love seeing things from a bird's eye view, then you should really try the Sabah Helicopter Tours.

Below are various images taken from around during my five-hour aerial tour of Sabah, and remember I do not operate the tours as you need to contact the operators.

Helicopter Tours in Sabah

KKIA Sabah Airport
Kota Kinabalu International Airport or KKIA
As the Sabah Air helicopter took off from the hanger, we flew past the Kota Kinabalu International Airport or KKIA which is just next to the sea.

The feeling was quite odd for me as it was my first time flying in a helicopter too. The chopper was a Bell 206B Long Ranger which could seat four people easily.

As two of my friends sat passenger at the back, I had the honor of being co-pilot sitting next to the captain in front.

What scared me at first was the see-through foot panel in the front as I could see the chopper lifting off the ground and everything moving just under my feet.

Photo of Mount Kinabalu Range
Kinabalu Range is seen from the helicopter
Flying towards Mount Kinabalu was rather interesting as we cruised past the famous Kinabalu Range, which stretches for miles. 

The roads that I usually drive on to get to the Mount Kinabalu looked so small when I was up in the air. 

In the picture above, you see the main road that follows the mountain range passing the smaller towns and villages en route to Kinabalu.

Helicopter View of Mount Kinabalu
Helicopter view of Mount Kinabalu
One of the most breath-taking views was seeing the mountain at an altitude of 6,000 feet above sea level. The captain turned to me and asked if I had climbed up before and sadly my answer was no.

He then told me to wait a few minutes and the next thing I know, I was at an altitude of 7,000 feet starring right at the tip of Mount Kinabalu. The experience was surreal having a different perspective of the mountain.

Sabah Gayana Eco Resort
Gayana Eco Resort seen from the helicopter
We then left Kinabalu and proceeded to fly past the Kiulu River and through gorges and canyons and hills before heading back to the coastal area. 

From here I had an excellent view of the many islands above the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park (TAR Park) where seeing Sulug, Manukan, Mamutik, and Sapi Island from the sky was indeed beautiful. 

Flying over the islands, we headed towards Gaya Island and saw the beautiful Gayana Eco Resort and also the Bungaraya Resort. Along the way, you can also spot the YTL Gaya Island Resort too. 

Helicopter view of Kota Kinabalu city
Kota Kinabalu city aerial view from the helicopter
Types of Helicopter Tours in Sabah

Generally, there are a few types of tours you can book from the travel agents in Kota Kinabalu. They need to be booked in advance, so they can arrange everything, including the pick up from your hotel. 

KK City & Sea Aerial Tour
Duration: 60 minutes
Capacity: 4 person
Minimum: 4 Person
Price: From RM 1,600.00 per person

Mount Kinabalu Panoramic Helicopter Tour
Duration: 60 minutes
Capacity: 4 person
Minimum: 4 Person
Price: From RM 1,600.00 per person

Customized Aerial Tour (Photography or Private Tour)
Duration: One to Two Hours
Capacity: Maximum 4 persons
Price: Varies as you need to book the entire helicopter

How To Book the Sabah Helicopter Tours? 

You need to contact some of the travel agencies in Sabah to book any helicopter tours. The larger tour companies will be able to help you with this.

Please take note that I am just a writer and photographer, and I do not operate the helicopter tours here. 

Kota Kinabalu Sulug Island
Sulug Island seen from the helicopter
Helicopter Services in Sabah

There are also specialized helicopter services offered for those who wish to travel around Sabah fast. This involves using various types of helicopters like Bell, Airbus Eurocopter, and Agusta. 

These services are often used by VIP's or emergencies and sometimes used by businessmen who want to travel easily from city to city in Sabah. You can check out Sabah Air for any helicopter service. 

Helicopter Filming or Videography Services in Sabah

For those who want to do aerial filming or videography, you need to obtain special permits from the Sabah State Government. The helicopters will fly you anywhere you want, and rarely, they will arrange the permits for you. 

Note the permits can range anywhere from thousands to tens of thousands of Ringgit Malaysia and need to be applied well beforehand.

Usually, you need a couple of months' application but do check with the relevant authorities on this. 

Heli Tours of Sabah
Bell 206B Long Ranger Helicopters in Sabah

For those who want to have a different kind of experience, you should consider looking at these unique tours in Sabah. There are a number of tour operators that offer these services.

Apart from the general aerial tours, Sabah Air also does air charters to various parts of Sabah namely the remote and hard to get to places like Maliau Basin, Mabul Islandand other popular islands.

The helicopters are also booked for special forest conversations visits to Danum Valley and Imbak Canyon especially when you are short on travel time.

Overall for the general tours, the price ranges anywhere from RM 1,400 and above per person and per hour for the Helicopter tours in Sabah.

You can also special charter a helicopter for business or a family trip, and the prices range from RM4000 and above per hour. Contact the relevant tour company in Kota Kinabalu for any inquiries. 


Jard The Great said...

RM700?? huhu.. guess will never try that tour...

Malaysia Asia said...

Jard, one day maybe :) You never know.

Cathy Sweeney said...

Beautiful photos. That helicopter ride must have been a thrill, especailly when he took you up to 7,000 feet.

Malaysia Asia said...

Thanks Cathy, yes it totally was a thrill. Never been on one before too.

Unknown said...

hello there. can i have the contact number for this helicopter tour?